The FBI is marking the 30th anniversary of the 1991 debut of "The Silence of the Lambs" by making business cards used by the two main characters their Artifact of the Month.
The FBI’s February Artifact of the Month is a set of business cards—one for Starling and one for Crawford. They were one of the many small props to bring authenticity to the set.
The FBI’s February Artifact of the Month is a set of business cards—one for Clarice Starling and one for Jack Crawford. They were one of the many small props to bring authenticity to the set of "The Silence of the Lambs." (Photo: FBI)
"The film not only set a new standard for psychological thrillers but also inspired a generation of women to join the FBI," the FBI website says.
The movie stars Jodie Foster as Clarice Starling, an FBI agent trainee at the FBI Academy in Quantico, Virginia. During her training, Special Agent Jack Crawford asks Starling to speak to an imprisoned murderer whose background in psychology could help the FBI capture another serial killer.
After meeting with the film’s director and producers, several FBI employees agreed to help with the film’s production. They reviewed the movie’s script, corrected details in scenes and even played extras.
"At the time, FBI employees didn’t realize the movie would become a blockbuster," the FBI website says. "They just hoped to promote the FBI’s brand and recruit more women.
For Supervisory Special Agent Shayne Buchwald of FBI Baltimore, that’s exactly what happened. She first saw the film with her high school boyfriend, who accidentally elbowed Buchwald in the nose during a startling scene.
"I was so captivated by the movie that I finished watching it with a Kleenex in my nose to stop the bleeding," Buchwald said. "I didn’t want to miss any of it."
Buchwald received a master’s degree in clinical psychology and completed new agent training in 2002. She still watches "The Silence of the Lambs" every year on her FBI anniversary.